Sub Tosun's bullet header secured a draw for Everton against Tottenham Hotspur in the 97th minute to earn a vital point after Andre Gomes suffered a horrific ankle injury, which forced 12 minutes of stoppage time.
's poor form was gleamingly obvious in a clumsy first half lacking in any chances.
Richarlison couldn’t make a clean break on a terrific through ball and
popped a header over the goal.
Richarlison turned a Lucas Digne cross and lashed to Paulo Gazzaniga in the 33rd for the first shot on target of the match.
The second half began with more pace, and Yerry Mina’s sloppy tackle on Heung-min Son was not given as a penalty by Martin Atkinson. Son exaggerated the contact, but it still looked like a reason to go to the spot.
Richarlison went across his body to snap a shot at Gazzaniga moments after a penalty shot.
Spurs went ahead when Alex Iwobi gave the ball away in his own half, Son nutmegging Mina with a pass to Dele. The Englishman dribbled free to the top of the box before beating Jordan Pickford with a low shot for 1-0.
Dele looked to have given the goal back as his raised arm struck the ball on a challenge inside the 18, but no penalty was awarded by
Then came the Son card, and substitute Dominic Calvert-Lewin nearly equalized when the game was restarted.
The Toffees found their equalizer in stoppage time, as Lucas Digne first touched a massive cross back into the mixer for Tosun to head past Gazzaniga.
1. Ben Davies grabbed his captaincy chance as Spurs were hit by injuries
With Hugo Lloris injured, Harry Kane ill, and Jan Vertonghen absent with a bothersome hamstring, the
captain’s armband was hauled over the elbow of Ben Davies.
Although the decision to hand the captaincy to the second-choice left-back looks a strange one, outwardly, there is some logic to Mauricio Pochettino’s decision to give Davies the nod over Son Heung-min, Toby Alderweireld, or Harry Winks. Davies is not quite so entrenched in the mire that Spurs find themselves in, so they should have been able to add a little bit of perspective from slightly outside of the group.
2. Christian Eriksen has been remarkably poor for Spurs this season
Eriksen looks a man without purpose at the moment, drifting through games with little tangible impact, little energy or effort or a sense of being. Where once he was the embodiment of all that was good about Mauricio Pochettino’s side, with verve and vigor abundant, he is now, in many ways, an encapsulation of
He appears certain that his future is elsewhere, but creative roles at the bigger European clubs are largely filled, and Eriksen’s string of ineffectual showings are hardly making him an attractive prospect for any potentially interested parties.
3. Desperation not to lose leads to drab first half
It was a properly awful first half at Goodison Park, with a game fully content to trundle along in a lifeless manner. With both sides desperate to avoid defeat, neither was willing to inject with the energy or invention required to jolt the contest into life and so along the game went in a holding pattern of midfield muddles and slow attacks, as the two sides dueled in the most cautious of manners.
The half only served to illustrate what happens when the need not to lose outweighs the desire to win, and what we got was utterly atrocious. The second half was not too much better, though Dele Alli’s goal, a couple of
consultations, the Andre Gomes injury and Cenk Tosun‘s late header at least meant there was action on which to comment.
4. VAR questions remain
It is becoming a little strange just how often
is a talking point, but we had the rare double-look at an incident in this encounter, so it bears mentioning again, unfortunately. When Yerry Mina tumbled into the legs of Son Heung-min and the South Korean fell to the floor under contact, Martin Atkinson shook his head, and it was over to video assistant referee Anthony Taylor to overturn his decision. You can argue either way on the incident, which could quite easily have been ruled a penalty, but what cannot be argued is that the VAR system continues to be there.
Quite why the sideline screens aren’t being used, despite apparent urging to do so from
clubs, is a mystery. That Taylor at Stockley Park decided the Son incident merited twice delaying the restart so he could affirm his decision but not a second look for Martin Atkinson is an indictment in and of itself. If the whole point of introducing VAR is to make more right decisions and aid referees, why is a system that affords them time and a second look being completely ignored?
VAR has proved itself an abject failure so far, and the biggest proponents have claimed that the implementation of the technology has been completely wrong.
5. Andre Gomes stretchered off with a horrible injury
A final word goes to the Portuguese midfielder, who suffered what appeared to be a horrible ankle injury after a collision with Serge Aurier. Son Heung-min was sent off for his challenge preceding the unfortunate incident, and the South Korean can count himself a little unlucky, with the outcome perhaps refereed rather than the challenge itself.
We hope that
will recover from his injury somewhere near the fine player he is. It looks the sort of injury that will have a long rehabilitation period, and likely leaves Everton without a key midfield presence for an extended period of time. Marco Silva could ill-afford such a loss, but Gomes’ long-term health is the most important matter. A speedy recovery to the midfielder.
travel to Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League on Wednesday night at 8 pm, before hosting Sheffield United in the
on Saturday. Everton are at Southampton on Saturday in the